Farm Briefs

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Cold conditions continue in state
Cold winter conditions continued throughout the state during the month of February.
Temperatures averaged 18.8 degrees, which was 11.4 degrees below normal.
Precipitation was slightly below normal in the Southwest and Southeast districts, but slightly above normal in the rest of the state. Statewide precipitation averaged 2.28 inches, which was 0.35 inches above normal.
Topsoil moisture was rated at 2 percent very short, 14 percent short, 70 percent adequate and 14 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture was rated at 6 percent very short, 32 percent short, 60 percent adequate and 2 percent surplus.
Heavy frost has the dormant winter wheat crop rated in mostly fair to good condition. Winter wheat conditions stand at 1 percent very poor, 5 percent poor, 40 percent fair, 50 percent good and 4 percent excellent.

Crop and livestock price indexes up
The February report on All-Farm Products Index of Prices Received by Farmers showed the index at 106 percent. That figure is based on 2011 prices being 100. It increased 7 points (7.1 percent) from January.
The crop index is up 4 points (4.5 percent) and the livestock index increased 4 points (3.4 percent). Producers received higher prices for cattle, oranges, market eggs and milk, and lower prices for broilers, peanuts, grapefruit and potatoes.
In addition to prices, the overall index is also affected by the seasonal change, based on a three-year average mix of commodities that producers sell. Increased monthly movement of cattle, milk and broilers more than offset the decreased marketing of soybeans, corn, tobacco and wheat.